Visitor FAQ

Visit -> Visitor FAQ

Preview The Art

Visit the Artist Directory on our website, the First Look Exhibit at the Somerville Museum, the Inside-Out Gallery in the Davis Square CVS windows, and the Small Works Show at Bow Market, to preview the studios and artwork. The First Look Exhibit opens at 11 am, an hour before the rest of SOS, so it’s a good place to start your visit and plan the rest of your day.

Make A Plan

Map out artists you’d like to visit ahead of time. Choose artists by medium, style, or neighborhood. Visit artists’ home studios and studio buildings side-by-side. Remember to mix in some new artists with your perennial favorites.

Talk With The Artists

You are invited into the private working spaces of artists working across all visual media, across genres, styles, moods and modes of expression. Open studios provides a perfect opportunity to speak with artists and ask questions in an informal setting.

Be Prepared

Wear comfortable shoes and clothing. Be prepared for variable weather. Consider bringing a water bottle. And definitely bring a bag. You’ll want to carry postcards, flyers, and that great art you purchase. Always ask before bringing an animal into an artist’s space.

Some artists will ask visitors to wear a mask, so be sure to bring one with you. We also encourage wearing a mask while riding the SOS Trolley.

Be Ready To Buy

SOS is about connecting with art and artists, and you’re under no pressure to buy anything. But it’s still a good idea to be prepared for that piece you fall in love with and want to take home. Bring cash or checks, as some artists will not be able to accept credit cards.

Refresh Yourself

Take breaks, rest, enjoy your weekend. Stop by one of Somerville’s many restaurants and cafes before, after, or between your studio visits.

Avoid Parking Headaches

If you come to Somerville by car, we recommend that you park in one of the free city lots and then ride the free SOS trolleys, use bike-share rentals, and walk to get around town. Several MBTA bus routes also easily connect one end of town to the other. If you’re able, consider coming by bike, public transportation, or on foot.

SOS With Kids

You know your kids better than anyone. Take the time to prepare them, and make sure they understand the rules about not touching things in the studios. Not only can the art be fragile, but working studios can be hazardous places. Stay aware!

If your kid needs a break between focusing on new things, plan walks, or visit a playground in between stops (not a bad idea for grown-ups either). Many artists will put out food and drinks for visitors. Make sure your kid understands your expectations around snacking.